A Mom Here..

Discussion in 'Second Grade' started by corney, Jan 19, 2009.

  1. corney

    corney Companion

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    Jan 19, 2009

    I hope y'all don't mind me joining your forum. I have an 8 yr old that is stuggling in all subjects except math. I'm at my wits end as to what can be done to motivate her in school. Anything reading related overwhelmes her to the point of distraction. Instead of trying she guesses at her answers in order to get the work done quickly. She also freezes when she is time tested. She is also in what the school calls the ESE program for children with learning disabilities.. She isn't ADD or ADHD... she is not disruptive just uninterested in learning.. She can read, but is slow. Her comprehension is much better then it used to be, but she seems to really struggle with the basics.. Any suggestions?? From reading some replies to one another I feel confident someone will have some positive insite on how to help us..
     
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  3. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jan 19, 2009

    Hi and welcome!

    Sorry, no insight or answers. I teach high school math, so I'm not much good to you on your questions.

    But I did want to be the first to welcome you!
     
  4. corney

    corney Companion

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    Jan 19, 2009

    Thank you so much for the welcome. I was reading some of the comments to one another and I find them hilerous.. I don't envy all of you as teachers.. but I do have the utmost respect for putting up with our little wolves dressed in sheeps clothing.. I hope I don't offend anyone in my attempt to get some help for my child.. she really is a good kid, she just hates school..
     
  5. ecsmom

    ecsmom Habitué

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    Jan 19, 2009

    Try to get her interested in reading for pleasure. It doesn't matter if it is a comic book, magazine or age appropriate chapter book. If she finds that she can enjoy reading it will build skills that will help her in the areas that are less enjoyable. Good luck! :)
     
  6. corney

    corney Companion

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    Jan 19, 2009

    She has a love of horses. She received some horses stories for Christmas which she seems to really enjoy.. Should I just let her read them or is it ok to ask her questions about the story or even ask her write about the story a little.. I'm asking because the writing is another one of her week parts especially when it relates to something she just read. After thinking about what you said.. if I just let her read it and not question her about it won't feel so much like school and she will be more apt to read them over and over.. I may have answered my own question..
     
  7. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Jan 19, 2009

    I think you have...often we, as teachers and parents, are so eager to have the children answer questions, write responses, and write reports that we take much of the joy out of learning. Helping her to find reading material at her level that she enjoys is important.

    More later--bell just rang.
     
  8. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    I think you need to ask questions, but in a sneaky way. Something along the lines of WOW, that book looks really neat....and get her to tell you about it. It should be conversational. You do need to know that she's reading and comprehending, but you're right in that you don't want to scare her off by making it seem like school.

    Everybody else's suggestions about getting books at her skill level and on topics she's interested in are right on target. There's a short series about math topics that's geared for younger readers...let me see if I can find what it is...it's been so long since I've seen it, I don't remember. If she likes math so much, maybe she'll enjoy reading about it :D. That's part of what turned me into a statistician instead of a total looser...
     
  9. corney

    corney Companion

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    Thanks MrsC.. :) She brings books home from the school library that we never get to read.. I'll make a point to working those in to our schedule.. 2 hours in the evening to do homework, eat, and play just isn't enought time most nights.. ;)
     
  10. corney

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    I don't know that she "likes math so much" as she seems to understand it better then reading words.. the numbers don't change just the solution, she is able to find the solution cause the numbers them selves don't change.. 3 is 3 no matter how you seperate it. Our language is difficult to a new reader because there are so many different rules.. She isn't mastering the rules.. an a doesn't always sound like an A knowing when it's supposed to is confusing to her. :(
     
  11. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Well, a 3 is a 3 unless you're in base one or base two, then it's a 1 or a 0, respectively....but that's far beyond elementary school math :D.

    I was just throwing out ideas....
     
  12. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    :p

    My 8 year old isn't incredibly fond of reading either. But I went to the Barnes & Noble sale a few weeks ago and got her some Hannah Montanna books, as well as some High School Musical ones. She's read one or two already.

    When we were kids, my brother HATED to read. At one point, for some reason, mom decided to read him The Old Man and the Sea. (That's right, Hemingway.) Mom got him half way through the story, then she stopped reading to him. He soon protested, since he wanted to know how the story ended. Mom told him it was up to him to finish the book-- and he did.

    I guess the point is to find a hook of some sort-- find her interests, and then find a book that she'll be interested in.
     
  13. corney

    corney Companion

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    I know and I appreciate them.. Ok. I've got a good idea how to handle the reading.. Now on to writing. Her hand writing is less then stellar.. I have a handwriting book that has her first trace the letters then write them herself, then goes in to single words and then a full sentence.. I think her biggest issue is she goes to fast.. a result of always being timed.. anything timed throws her in to a tizzy so she rushes, guesses at answers, and scribbles what she thinks will be acceptable. If she could slow down and sound out her words her writing would be more ledgable..

    I must note.. she know how to write all her letters upper and lower case.. her writing isn't neat is very sloppy.
     
  14. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Has she started to learn script yet?

    My son's printing was indecipherable. His script is gorgeous!!

    Another idea: get her a small whiteboard (at Target for under $10) and some pens. She'll enjoy writing on that, and erasing her "mistakes" to make the letters perfectly.
     
  15. corney

    corney Companion

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    there is a series of books the Beyer horse company has available, I got her three of them for Christmas.. I think once she finishes those we will look in to getting the rest of the series.. I sit with her while she reads, that way I can tell if she is reading or skimming..
     
  16. corney

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    No script yet.. and yes we have a white board she uses a lot.. but because it has no lines it's still pretty sloppy.. she has gotten better especially if she takes her time.. when she feels rushed or rushes on her own that is when it's pretty bad.. No spaces, all words misspelled etc...
     
  17. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Where's rainstorm when you need her...she's got some excellent ideas for handwriting....
     
  18. corney

    corney Companion

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    probably enjoying her day off.. : D :D :D

    by the way I like your signature..
     
  19. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Jan 19, 2009

    Another thing to look for is books on CD. For some kids, hearing the text while following along in the book really helps with comprehension. There are also several sites with on-line stories (text and audio)--unfortunately, those links are on my computer at school. I'll try to post them tomorrow.
     
  20. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    There is a video by Rick Lavorie called "F.A.T. City Workshop: How Difficult Can it Be?" See if your library has it. It is a VERY good workshop video where the presenter makes a group of adults feel like they are learning disabled. The most profound statement I got from it (paraphrased) was, "the bottom line is that while regular kids are processing the answer, learning disabled kids are still processing the question." It had a huge impact on me when I watched it. If your library has it, please take the time to watch it. It isn't about being smart or dumb. It's about how their brains process the information and what is typical to see from them. It also highlights many mistakes we make as parents and teachers.

    The second thing I recommend is to start making reading, math, etc. part of TEACHABLE moments instead of explicit teaching. My child used to hate reading as well when he was younger. He wasn't bad at it. It just didn't seem to pull his interest. Ironically the SAME child barely counted the required number in Kinder. By barely I mean we worked on him HARD that year. I let go. I started doing functional teaching at home. Now he is in honors math. THe point behind functional teaching is to use what you already do at home. Do you read recipes? Do you go through ads in the paper and talk about them. Do you let her pick up the mail and sort it for you and tell you what she observes and finds important for you to view? Do you ask her to tell you what the directions say (and pretend to be too busy to see them yourself)? Do you ask her to comparison shop with you and follow a list? Do you discuss decimals and unit pricing? Do you roll coins together? There are so many things you can do. Even planning vacations and reviewing websites and brochures have value. My child started out being okay with functional reading because it suited a purpose. Then he graduated into nonfiction. Now he reads books I have trouble understanding (especially in the fantasy genre).

    By the same token I have a child who could count past 200 before kinder, has almost photographic memory with things and is just brilliant except for one thing. He has trouble with abstract thinking skills. (That, by the way, is involved in some learning disabilities as well). He reads anything and he comprehends it on a basic level but if you ask him to go beyond that, he can struggle but not realize it himself. For example, in third grade (last year), he had a one page article about forest fires. Everybody knows they are dangerous and bad. The article was trying to explain that sometimes they can be beneficial. Because it didn't say, "forest fires are beneficial because a, b, c reason" my son had trouble inferring information from the article. It was plain as day for me but for him I couldn't seem to explain how it was clearly in the article but wasn't expressly written for him to copy down on paper.

    Each child has their own style. Meet her where she is and build from there. Make learning a natural part of your day instead of trying to teach "to the standard." Do help her with her homework but outside of that, just be creative and see how many teachable moments you can come up with without making her so aware of these teaching moments and without putting the pressure on her.

    Another example, if you notice her staring at bulletin boards as you drive, pretend you were looking too but missed it. Ask if she caught it. If so, have a discussion. If not, let it go. Teachable moments are everywhere.
     
  21. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jan 19, 2009

    corney, welcome to our playground.

    Are you still reading to your daughter? (My elder daughter, who was in middle school when the Harry Potter books began, still remembers me reading them aloud to her and her sister.)

    And does she see you reading and enjoying it?

    I like the idea of books on CD.
     

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